Recipes from the Farmers’ Market: Broccoli Salad

I bought some broccoli at the Market a week or so ago.  I thought about it before I bought it, simply because I’m a little broccoli-ed out.  Broccoli was always my go-to frozen veggie, and I’ve been known (on lazy nights) to zap an entire bag of frozen broccoli, douse it with lemon juice, garlic powder, Parmesan cheese and a little olive oil, and call it dinner.  I have consumed more than my fair share of broccoli over the years, ok? But I figured, what the heck, this is fresh (and abundant at the moment), and I already know I like it.  Nothing to lose, right?  Right.  Unfortunately, I was still too lazy to feel like actually, you know, COOKING it.  So, salad!!

2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbs each: lemon juice, white wine vinegar (you can use 2 Tbs of just one of those, but it’s better with both)
1/2 tsp each: dried oregano, dried basil
1/4 tsp pepper (Yes, it’s a lot, but not as much as you think it will be.)
2 Tbs half-and-half
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 broccoli crowns, chopped
8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, cubed
4 oz salami, sliced (optional)

The Recipe
In a large bowl, combine the garlic, lemon juice, vinegar, oregano, basil, pepper and half-and-half.  Whisk in the mayonnaise until everything is smooth.

Add the broccoli, cheddar and salami and toss until everything is evenly coated.  (It’s not a lot of dressing; just enough to flavor it.  If you like a lot of dressing, add another 1/4 cup of mayo and another Tbs of half-and-half.)

How did it go?
YUM.  That’s how it went.  (And well-deserved after that beef-and-pasta stuff.)  It makes a great main dish with the cheese and salami, and because the broccoli was fresh, it stayed crunchy (even coated in dressing) for a couple of days.  I also noticed that it was better after a few hours in the fridge: the garlic sort of mellowed in the lemon juice and vinegar.  (If you’re serving it right away, you might want cut the garlic by half.)  I ate this for lunch most of the week and was sad when it was gone.


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